Class of 2012; Alumnae Committee Member
Natalia Delgado’s varied legal and business career includes acting as a senior executive of a public company, a board member of one of the largest transit systems in the world and partner of a nationally-recognized law firm. Ms. Delgado is known for her leadership skills, personal integrity and her ability to easily grasp business issues and achieve practical solutions to complex business problems.
For seven years, Natalia Delgado was a member of the five-person executive team of Huron Consulting Group Inc. (“Huron”), preparing the company for its initial public offering listing on NASDAQ, participating in day-to-day business operations, charting business growth, investor relations and public disclosure. In this capacity, Ms. Delgado oversaw the legal aspects of the public offering, subsequent capital raises, earnings calls, securities disclosure filings and press releases. Her duties included developing strategies for managing and safeguarding the data of the company and its clients, the company’s servers and back up data systems, employee private information, as well as dealing with data breaches.
In her role a chief legal officer of Huron, Ms. Delgado created the legal and corporate governance structures necessary for the business to operate as a public company and to expand nationally and internationally, starting from a handful of venues and growing to over 15 offices offering consulting services in numerous countries. Moreover, Ms. Delgado acted as the principal compliance officer for the company’s expanding range of consulting offerings, interfacing with federal and state regulatory agencies. The company grew to provide services to a variety of industries subject to diverse regulatory frameworks and challenging political and economic environments across the globe, in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. Among other activities, Ms. Delgado led the company’s 20-person working group that developed and implemented a Foreign Corrupt Practices (FCPA) prevention program, including the development of internal controls and procedures, both financial and legal, employee training and risk monitoring.
During her tenure at Huron, Ms. Delgado served as the in-house counsel and lead executive in an internal investigation by the audit committee of accounting irregularities that led to a major financial restatement and resulted in a “bet-the-company” litigation. As a result, she possesses in-depth experience with sensitive internal investigations, as well as an understanding of the roles of the board, the audit committee and the outside auditors in grappling with a financial crisis and a governmental investigation. She spearheaded a successful effort to swiftly resolve class action litigation, secure funds for settlement from the insurers under director and officer policies, and she assisted the new management in restructuring the company’s operations so that it emerged poised for the accomplishments that it has achieved in the years since.
Prior to joining Huron, Ms. Delgado engaged in the private practice of law for over 20 years as a corporate and securities lawyer, including as a partner at Jenner & Block in Chicago, Illinois. During that period, she served as transactional counsel for companies in numerous industries, including financial services, insurance, real estate, and utility companies, ranging in size from a major government defense contractor to Internet startups. She concentrated her practice on securities offerings (both debt and equity) and mergers and acquisitions and her professional experience includes a variety of business transactions in Latin America, including, Mexico, Peru and Brazil.
Since the beginning of her career, Ms. Delgado has devoted significant energies to charitable and civic organizations. In particular, she served for five years on the board of the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA), one of the largest public transit systems in the world, with a work force of over 12,000 employees. At the CTA, she headed the budget and procurement committees. In those capacities, Ms. Delgado sponsored a transparent system for the awarding of contracts to “disadvantaged business enterprises”, which served as a model for the municipal government of Chicago. She also implemented a “managing by objectives” program in order to increase accountability and reduce bureaucracy within the agency.
Ms. Delgado retired from Huron at year-end 2011. She is currently the director of the Cuba Capacity Building Project at Columbia Law School, whose aim is to develop expertise among Cubans in positions of responsibility in order to successfully change the country’s centralized economy and begin its incorporation into the world economy. The focus of the project to date has been to increase expertise among Cuban academics that serve as advisers to the government by activities such as providing them access to global databases of academic scholarship, creating a collection in Cuba of legal materials in the areas of contracts, enterprise organization, corporate finance, and international finance, and sponsoring workshops and exchanges to develop understanding of those subject areas in the international context. In this capacity, Ms. Delgado has been mentoring young Cubans studying in the U.S. or seeking to develop expertise working in the U.S.
This year, the Cuba Project launched a website that reaches a far broader audience in Cuba, providing informational posts on the impact of Cuban policies on the economy and society and the operation of legal institutions in market economies:
https://horizontecubano.law.columbia.edu/. In addition, the website publishes articles on regulatory changes in Cuba of interest outside of Cuba.
Previously, Ms. Delgado served as co-chair of Appleseed, a national network of 17 public interest law centers located throughout the US and Mexico that leverages the pro-bono talents of lawyers, accountants and other professionals to solve social problems and promote opportunity and education for all. For over a decade, Ms. Delgado also has been a board member of the National Women’s Law Center.
Ms. Delgado graduated from the University of Michigan Law School and Oberlin College. She was born in Cuba and now lives in New York with her family. She is fluent in Spanish and has a working knowledge of French and Portuguese.